- A black University of Virginia student sustained a head wound during an arrest early Wednesday morning by Virginia's Alcohol and Beverage Control Board.
- Multiple videos and a graphic photo of the arrest of Martese Johnson, a third-year student, show him on the ground during the arrest. His head injury required 10 stitches, according to the Cavalier Daily.
- A breathalyzer test found Johnson was not drunk during the arrest, Marcus Martin, UVA's vice president for equity and diversity, told CNN. Johnson's ID was not fake — it was a valid Illinois ID that shows he won't be 21 until June — and he did not resist arrest, Martin said.
- Johnson was charged with obstructing justice and profane swearing or intoxication in public.
- Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has requested an independent investigation by Virginia state police, according to Alcohol and Beverage Control.
The video of Johnson's arrest
This photo, from Bryan Beaubrun, a fourth-year UVA student, shows Johnson's injuries:
I stand with Martese Johnson. There is no excuse for this. @VirginiaABC you should be ashamed. pic.twitter.com/4j3bnfDlBI— UVAProblems (@UVAProbs) March 18, 2015
The Cavalier Daily has video of Johnson's arrest, also taken by Beaubrun, who told the student newspaper that Johnson was pulled aside by a bouncer and was talking to police when the arrest occurred. In an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Martin said there was confusion about the zip code on Johnson's ID, and that he was asked to speak with an officer from Alcohol and Beverage Control.
"The ID was not fake," Martin told CNN. "I saw his ID. He has ID from the state of Illinois. His birthday was listed correctly on the ID." Johnson was then asked about his ID again and the situation escalated, Martin said.
In the video — which has explicit language — Johnson appears to be on the ground, yelling at officers, "I go to UVA, you fucking racists… How does this happen?"
The agents involved have been restricted to administrative duties, according to the Virginia ABC.
How Johnson's arrest fits into a larger narrative
Although Johnson's encounter with police apparently started over concerns about his ID, he wasn't actually charged with any ID-related crime, and his lawyer, Daniel Watkins, said in a statement that he was not accused of having a fake ID.
Watkins says Johnson was charged with obstructing justice without threats of force and profane swearing or intoxication in public. Johnson told Martin, the UVA vice president, that he took a breathalyzer test at the police station and was not drunk, Martin told CNN. He was released a few hours after the arrest.
But his injuries — and the disturbing images and video — seem poised to become part of a larger concern about police use of force and how black Americans interact with the criminal justice system. Johnson was only injured, not killed. But his encounter — over the very common college-student crime of allegedly having a fake ID — seems to fit into a larger narrative that includes the Ferguson protests, the death of Eric Garner in New York, and the shooting of Tamir Rice in Cleveland.
Update: This post has been updated to clarify that Johnson was not accused of having a fake ID, according to his lawyer, and to add comments a University of Virginia vice president made to CNN.
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